In the Shadow of Shari'ah: Islam, Islamic Law, and Democracy in Pakistan [NOOK Book]

Overview

Recent events in Pakistan and the Islamic world have sparked an unprecedented level of interest in the relationship between Islam and democracy. In the Shadow of Shari'ah sets out to prove that Islam and the democratic ethos are neither compatible nor incompatible in any permanent or specific sense. Rather, the two work more or less in concert in relation to the historically embedded choices of individual Muslims and their specific approaches to Islamic law.

Studies of shari'ah,...

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In the Shadow of Shari'ah: Islam, Islamic Law, and Democracy in Pakistan

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Overview

Recent events in Pakistan and the Islamic world have sparked an unprecedented level of interest in the relationship between Islam and democracy. In the Shadow of Shari'ah sets out to prove that Islam and the democratic ethos are neither compatible nor incompatible in any permanent or specific sense. Rather, the two work more or less in concert in relation to the historically embedded choices of individual Muslims and their specific approaches to Islamic law.

Studies of shari'ah, or Islamic law, lie at the heart of several important debates, but carefully researched scholarship on the terms of Islamic law are rare. Matthew J. Nelson launches a historically embedded analysis of shari'ah in Pakistan's largest and most influential province, Punjab, to highlight the relationships among Islam, Islamic law, and democracy and the ways in which different cultural and historical contexts transform each entity. Nelson begins with colonial and postcolonial efforts to introduce shari'ah into an environment tied to "tribal" custom, then he examines the way in which electoral accountability came to privilege those who could simultaneously sustain Islamic law "in theory" and customary law "in practice." Drawing attention to the interaction of formal and informal legal and political institutions over time, Nelson argues that a deeper understanding of the relationship between Islam and democracy requires a more sophisticated appreciation of the complex legal strategies adopted by individual Muslims.

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What People Are Saying

Francis Robinson

This is an outstanding book. It is, amongst other things, about land, law, and power in the Punjab from the mid-nineteenth century to the present; about how Muslims might vote for shari'ah law but prefer customary law in practice; and about how power works at the local level in Pakistan. It is deeply thoughtful on the relationship among Islam, Islamic law, and democracy and no less thoughtful on a scholarly approach to these subjects. In the Shadow of Shari'ah will be read with admiration by scholars of Pakistan and also of the wider Muslim world for decades to come.

Francis Robinson, professor of the history of South Asia, Royal Holloway, University of London, and Sultan of Oman Fellow, Oxford Centre for Islamic Studies

Francis Robinson

This is an outstanding book. It is, amongst other things, about land, law, and power in the Punjab from the mid-nineteenth century to the present; about how Muslims might vote for shari'ah law but prefer customary law in practice; and about how power works at the local level in Pakistan. It is deeply thoughtful on the relationship among Islam, Islamic law, and democracy and no less thoughtful on a scholarly approach to these subjects. In the Shadow of Shari'ah will be read with admiration by scholars of Pakistan and also of the wider Muslim world for decades to come.

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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780231800587
  • Publisher: Columbia University Press
  • Publication date: 2/10/2011
  • Series: Columbia/Hurst Series
  • Sold by: Barnes & Noble
  • Format: eBook
  • Pages: 288
  • File size: 2 MB

Meet the Author

Mathew J. Nelson is lecturer in the politics of South Asia at the School of Oriental and African Studies, University of London.

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Table of Contents

Preface xi

Acknowledgements xvii

List of Figures, Maps, and Tables xxi

Terminology and Transliteration xxv

Glossary xxvii

Introduction: Law and the Logic of Local Politics in Pakistan 1

Part 1 Constructing the 'Law of the Land' (1849-1949)

1 Who Owns the Land? (1849-1900): Revenue Administration, Legal Administration, and Rural Indebtedness 15

2 Who Inherits the Land? (1900-1947): Hindu Law, Muslim Law, Customary Law, and Nationalism 63

Part 2 Changing the 'Law of the Land' (1947-1999)

3 From Colonial Punjab to Postcolonial Pakistan: Independence, Partition, Authoritarianism, and Democracy 115

4 Who Controls the Land? (1947-1999): Land Reform, Law Reform, and the Logic of Local Politics 135

Part 3 Understanding Islam, Islamic Law, and Democracy in Practice

5 The Logic of Local Politics in Lahore, Sialkot, and Sargodha 183

6 Microfoundational Mechanisms and Comparative Politics 231

Conclusion: Islam, Islamic Law, and Democracy in Pakistan and Beyond 261

Appendix 277

Bibliography 281

Notes 303

Index 331

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